UPSC Prelims 2020 Important topics: India’s Desert National Park

Desert National Park is a beautiful place, located in the Jaisalmer district of the state of Rajasthan. Desert National Park is one of the largest national parks in India. The Desert National Park is also a protected sanctuary.

The Desert protected sanctuary was declared as a National park in 1980. Total area of the National park is about 3162 km2. The desert is a harsh place to sustain life and thus most of the fauna and flora live on the edge.

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The great Indian Bustard is a magnificent bird and can be seen in considerably good numbers in this park. It migrates locally in different seasons. The region is a heaven for migratory and resident birds of the desert.

Desert National park harbours a wide array of flora and faunal species. It is only place where Rajasthan State Bird (Great Indian Bustard), State animal (Camel) and State tree (Khejri) and State flower (Rohida) are found naturally.

Desert National Park

Desert National Park is a beautiful place, located in the Jaisalmer district of the state of Rajasthan. Desert National Park is one of the largest national parks in India. The Desert National Park is also a protected sanctuary.

The Desert protected sanctuary was declared as a National park in 1980. Total area of the National park is about 3162 km2. The desert is a harsh place to sustain life and thus most of the fauna and flora live on the edge.

The great Indian Bustard is a magnificent bird and can be seen in considerably good numbers in this park. It migrates locally in different seasons. The region is a heaven for migratory and resident birds of the desert.

Desert National park harbours a wide array of flora and faunal species. It is only place where Rajasthan State Bird (Great Indian Bustard), State animal (Camel) and State tree (Khejri) and State flower (Rohida) are found naturally.

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It also has fossil evidences dating back to the Jurassic Period indicating hot and humid climate characterized by dense forests. 180 million years old fossils of animals and plants are preserved at Wood Fossil Park at Akal, situated 17 km away from Jaisalmer.

The Desert National Park is a unique and fragile ecosystem. More than 60 per cent of it is simply semi-arid desert. The seemingly barren lands gradually dissolve at the horizon touching Pakistan. But the warm sands of the Desert National Park beyond Jaisalmer form a fertile micro broth hiding an astounding variety of animals and birds.

The topography of Desert National Park supports sandy, gravelly, rocky, and compact salt lake bottoms. Sandy areas dominate the western parts of Jaisalmer district, while gravelly and rocky areas are scattered throughout central, southern and eastern areas.

The Desert National Park is barren with several sand dunes and a few hills in the north-western region. The Park forms a vast sandy and undulating terrain.

Seasons

Winter – October to March

Summer – April to June

Monsoon – July to September

Average rainfall: 50 to 200 mm

Temperature:       Maximum – 50o C

                             Minimum – 4o C

Location – N 25 51 to N 26 52 and E 70 18 to E 70 34

Dominant flora

Ronj, Khair, Rohira, Dhok, KhejriPalm treesBer, Aakshrub, Sewan grass etc.

Commiphora wightii, Ammannie desertorum, Acacia spp., Dipcadi erythraem, Enneatogon, Ephedra foliata, Glossonema varians, Helitropium rariflorum, Limeum indicum, Rhynchosia schimpari,Seddera latifolia, Sesuvium sesuvioides, Tephrosiafalciformis, Tribulus rajasthanensis and Zizyphus truncate provide sustenance to the desertfauna.

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Dominant fauna

Birds – Great Indian Bustard, Falcons, Eagles, Vultures, Bee-Eaters, Shrikes, Larks, Demoiselle Crane, Macqueen’s Bustard, Sandgrouse, Long-Legged, Honey Buzzards, chats, babblers, kites etc.

Mammals – Camel, Desert Fox, Bengal Fox, Chinkara, Wolf, Desert Cat, Blackbuck, Hedgehog, Nilgai etc.

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